Finding the Right Fit: How a Lifelong Engineering Leader Pivoted to a New Career as a Small Business Owner

Finding the Right Fit: How a Lifelong Engineering Leader Pivoted to a New Career as a Small Business Owner
Topics SBA LendingSmall Business LendingSuccess Stories

After running a factory in corporate America for 25 years, Nate West wasn’t short on options when considering the next phase of his career.

“I was fortunate enough to have an engineering background that, coupled with my management experience, afforded me some leeway in what path I wanted to take,” said Nate.

Nate knew he wanted to use his technical skills and background, and a friend’s advice sparked some deeper research.

“My friend told me, ‘Nate, you’ve been running a business for the past 25 years, you know how to do it. Why not do it for yourself?’”

Nate knew he would need a solid partner or internal help for the marketing side of the business, especially digital marketing. So, he contacted a broker that helps connect entrepreneurs with franchises and Nate ultimately chose to open a TemperaturePro heating, cooling and plumbing franchise in King of Prussia, Pennsylvania.

“After reviewing several options, starting a TemperaturePro franchise was by far the best fit for me,” said Nate. “I loved that I not only could apply my technical skills, but that TemperaturePro was also very in tune with environmental efficiencies and impacts. Plus, indoor air quality now has a whole new outlook.”

To top it off, Nate was impressed with the marketing systems and support in place for TemperaturePro franchisees.

The next step for Nate was funding for his new business. Working with a financing broker, he was connected with WSFS Bank’s SBA National Franchise Relationship Manager, Richard Snow, and SBA Portfolio Manager Tamico Williams, who helped Nate secure U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) funding.

“The SBA loan is a long process with loads of requirements, twists and turns. It can be daunting. Richard, Tamico and the professionals at WSFS really helped me navigate the process and helped me to the finish line. I recommend them to anyone,” added Nate.

In April 2020, TemperaturePro of King of Prussia was incorporated and opened operations in late August.

“From the WSFS team helping me get to the finish line to the brokers I worked with at the very beginning, I suggest any small business owner or entrepreneur lean on the resources available to them,” said Nate. “There’s no manual out there on finding your next venture or incorporating and financing it.”

Speaking of suggestions, Nate has one other piece of advice he’s learned in his time as a TemperaturePro franchise owner.

“I advise homeowners and business owners alike to pay attention to the early warning signs of your HVAC equipment faltering, such as weird sounds coming from a blower motor. Better yet, sign up for a maintenance plan with a professional. That’s the best and most affordable way to ensure your systems are working and can be fixed before they become a costly emergency repair.”

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